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PETA Sues USDA for Years of Bird Neglect

Written by Michelle Kretzer | June 27, 2013

PETA is demanding that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) start being more “bird-brained”—birds are highly intelligent—and actually do its job to protect these animals.

In 2004, the USDA officially recognized that captive birds were protected by the federal Animal Welfare Act. But since then, the agency has failed to release regulatory standards for the humane care of birds, and it has responded to numerous complaints filed by PETA regarding the abuse and neglect of birds by saying that birds are not currently regulated and inspected. So we’ve filed a lawsuit against the USDA for turning a blind eye to welfare of birds. Here are just a few of the recent instances where the USDA has failed to afford birds the protections they’re entitled to: 

A visitor to the Lazy 5 Ranch roadside zoo in Mooresville, North Carolina, reported and videotaped an injured duck, who had likely been struck by a car and who flailing on the ground without anyone attending to her. The concerned visitor also reported and documented contaminated drinking water and bird enclosures that were filled with excrement. 

A PETA investigation of farmed-animal exhibitor Linvilla Orchards revealed that several birds were suffering from apparently untreated injuries, sores, and severe feather loss. The investigator also found dead chickens inside enclosures with live birds.

At the East Maui Animal Refuge in Haiku, Hawaii, a PETA investigation found birds with bacterial infections, birds with broken wings, and a blind owl who was confined to a tiny travel crate and whose feet were swollen and blistered—symptoms of bumblefoot, which is an excruciatingly painful and debilitating condition.

PETA reported the Turtle Back Zoo in West Orange, New Jersey, to the USDA after more than 500 parakeets died from starvation or parasitic infestations in a two-year period. A penguin also died after being featherless for two years.

PETA, local law enforcement, and other agencies have often had to step in and try to help birds when the USDA has refused to act. While we concentrate on getting the USDA to fulfill its duty, please report any cases of bird abuse and neglect that you witness to PETA.

Commenting is closed.
  • monika says:

    Those images are very disturbing, these animals are suffering ant thais has to stop. If you can’t or don’t know how to properly take care of a life being don’t own one. That’s just very sad Sincerely Monika B

  • Karen brand says:

    The members of the USDA must all be fired. A new organization must be started whose members are kind and caring individuals whose goal is to aid these animals and protect them at all costs. The USDA are uncaring and selfish . It is disgusting how they pad their pockets instead of doing their jobs. I would show pictures of the poor, sick animals to their children and grandchildren.

  • Marine says:

    I SIGN !!!!

  • Свет says:

    Хватит издеваться над животными, давно уже не первобытный век.

  • hermanda says:

    protect the birds

  • montserrat says:

    PETA is demanding that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) start being more “bird-brained”—birds are highly intelligent—and actually do its job to protect these animals.

  • Anna Korshunova says:

    Безобразие. Равнодушие людей к жизни животным приравнивается к фашизму

  • Sina Faghanzadeh says:


  • liu wai ling says:

    Please USDA don’t neglect birds . respect and responsible birds alive, they also have right and feeling , It’s time now , please USDA stand for birds now, give love and protect their life, Thank you

  • Sick of the useless USDA says:

    I would like to see a documentary film about the USDA, made by the same people who made the film ‘ENRON, The Smartest Guys in the Room.’ Maybe Charles Ferguson, who made the film, ‘Inside Job,’ about the American meltdown, could make alternating film segments. List how much all the USDA staff make, their lifestyles. I’ll bet they are living like the banksters.